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English teenagers 'are most illiterate in the developed world', report reveals

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posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:11 AM
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a reply to: woodwardjnr

Way back in the day, for me anyway, between the years of 18-24 i went to college then on to university to study Electronic and Electrical Engineering. Having only really studied mathematics in secondary school at a general standard grade level the notion of quadratic equations, complex numbers, calculus and differentiation certainly made my head spin but i managed to get my head around the concepts, buckle down and eventually attain my HND then moving on to do a degree in Information Technology(Technical Support).

My point is that at that age i had to know how to do basic arithmetic and English or i would never have been able to function and it saddens me tremendously that our young adults and school leavers are lacking in these areas.
edit on 29-1-2016 by andy06shake because: (no reason given)




posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:11 AM
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Dis aint nuffin knew, met so many ppl in dere 40s an 50s dat cnt read or rite av lost count looool

I've received CVs with covering letters from adults that are like that, it's shocking.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:16 AM
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a reply to: anxiouswens if you've ever been to Europe you will notice most people can speak English as a second language, from Holland Germany and Spain, the French are a little more proud and would prefer you speak French, but most countries in Europe children learn English as a 2nd language from an early age. No wonder employers want to keep employing migrants over British workers. When they say British workers lack key skills, they mean the ability to comprehend and communicate in English. Instead of blaming immigrants we should be ashamed of our ability to teach English to our own kids and stop using scapegoats to pass the buck onto all the time.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:18 AM
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I did a quick search, on this because the narrative that I have always heard is that England was the refuge of the literate, and artistic, and I never really felt any reason not to believe it. What a quick search discovered however is that literacy has been a real problem for sometime there.

4 years ago
blogs.telegraph.co.uk... at-way/

This one is from 5 years ago
www.theguardian.com...

Even France has issues it seems.
www.english.rfi.fr...

Who knew?



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:19 AM
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originally posted by: crazyewok

originally posted by: Soloprotocol
The English have never been the brightest...Thick as ####.


Almost as thick as a nation that want their "freedom" only to hand their sovereignty over to EU bureaucrats




posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:21 AM
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a reply to: anxiouswens

But your opening remark is patently false, and we can all see why you'd jump to immigrants being the issue, but the fact is, where I live, we have zero immigrants in schools. None.

We have smaller classes than I learned in, and even smaller than I taught in, due to the vast number of academies that are springing up.

Yet, secondary school students and early college students here ALSO have a major deficit in core skills such as English and Maths.

There is a problem, but your 'all the ills are because of immigration' cry falls flat here.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:22 AM
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a reply to: Punisher75
If I'm right in seeing the rejection of discipline, a very left-wing cause, as one of the roots of the problem, then this is the result of several decades of retrogression.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:24 AM
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originally posted by: crazyewok

originally posted by: DISRAELI
a reply to: Punisher75
That ought to depend on which British accent.
There are dozens of them, and some of them would not impress even Americans.



Apprently I sould like Hugh Grant to my American friends so I guess that means instant job as CEO of a bank! Woooo!


LOL Maybe so, there was an Ex Pat forum I was reading about a month ago and it was advice to New English Ex Pats from more experienced English Ex Pats who have come to the U.S.
It was their advice that to increase your chances of employment in the U.S. you should "Play up" being English.
LOL



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:26 AM
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a reply to: woodwardjnr

I can only offer an opinion based on my own observations and lack any 'facts' to support them but I've got to say that many youngsters I meet are just as educated and articulated as those of yesteryear.

The thing is there seems to be a massive gulf opening up between those who want to learn and develop and those who don't.
Teachers tend to lack the time and resources to spend nurturing and encouraging and have to stick to a set curriculum that adheres to a strict timeline and suppresses individualism and even creativity.

Pupils who tend to excel seem to be very self-motivated and / or have parents or guardians who encourage.

Unfortunately not everyone has that luxury.

I suspect the findings are an inevitable outcome of serial under-funding in our education system and a non-fit for purpose National Curriculum whilst reflecting changing standards within our society.

Whatever the reasons its still a damning indictment on our society as a whole.

a reply to: Aliensun

I swear, a lot - yet I'd still consider myself to have a reasonable command of the English language and have above average numeracy skills.

I suspect there's no actual correlation - but I could very well be wrong.

a reply to: AugustusMasonicus



How much of this has to do with the influx of immigration you are experiencing.....


To be honest, probably very little.

Sure, its a drain on resources in certain schools but if we had an adequately funded education system that was fit for purpose I doubt it would be much of an issue at all.

a reply to: DISRAELI



One factor could be the effect of trendy political attitudes on fashions in education.
Such as the renunciation of discipline, and the idea that you musn't tell pupils that they've got anything wrong.


I suspect that may have a massive bearing on things.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:28 AM
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a reply to: Freeborn

My question really did not have anything to do with school funding.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:29 AM
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originally posted by: DISRAELI
a reply to: Punisher75
If I'm right in seeing the rejection of discipline, a very left-wing cause, as one of the roots of the problem, then this is the result of several decades of retrogression.



You will get no argument from me on this issue.
I had a few friends whose parents paid good money to send their kids to a Montessori school when I was a kid.
The School taught kids from Kindergarten to the 8th grade.
Totally unprepared for Public High School, when they arrived.
Granted the Public High School I went to was pretty decent as far as Public High Schools go, being located in a small college town, but the kicker is that the Montessori School was located in the same town.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:29 AM
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Orwell may have been onto something when he said the goal was to dumb down language to the point that ideas could no longer be expressed. It's becoming increasingly rare to encounter people that are prepared to engage in anything other than idle small talk.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:30 AM
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a reply to: Soloprotocol

Why Solo, good to see that you're still trawling ATS seeking every opportunity to spout your anti-English bigotry whilst offering absolutely zero of relevance or interest on the topic at hand.

You must have a really sad and miserable existence.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:33 AM
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originally posted by: Learningman
a reply to: anxiouswens

But your opening remark is patently false, and we can all see why you'd jump to immigrants being the issue, but the fact is, where I live, we have zero immigrants in schools. None.

We have smaller classes than I learned in, and even smaller than I taught in, due to the vast number of academies that are springing up.

Yet, secondary school students and early college students here ALSO have a major deficit in core skills such as English and Maths.

There is a problem, but your 'all the ills are because of immigration' cry falls flat here.


I think another factor is that kids who are bored, disruptive and generally not interested in learning are now labelled as having adhd and handed ritalin like smarties instead of being placed into the special class to focus on the areas where they're lacking.

"Don't worry Billy, you're not an annoying idiot, you have a medical condition, so we'll lower our standards for you and still meet our targets... now take these pills"



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:34 AM
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a reply to: Freeborn I think your right about the parental influences. I had to be forced into doing my homework by my parents. The kids I was helping at the youth club, we're getting no help at all from their parents, despite the work being extremely basic. I only did it for them, because I didn't want to see them failing at school in their early teens, but if your parents aren't going to Instil that discipline and the schools aren't doing it who is? I think we also have that culture where it's deemed not cool to work in school or your a geek. I think that's been a very damaging attitude over the years


edit on 29-1-2016 by woodwardjnr because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:35 AM
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originally posted by: MagnaCarta2015
Orwell may have been onto something when he said the goal was to dumb down language to the point that ideas could no longer be expressed. It's becoming increasingly rare to encounter people that are prepared to engage in anything other than idle small talk.


I am pretty certain your on to something, think of text speech.
I would love to claim to be totally above it but alas, I still use "LOL" as a replacement for Laugh Out Loud. At least I have not regressed to double plus good yet.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:36 AM
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As I neglected to add my two cents, I will admit I have no real answer to why, but I will give my opinions. They will not be popular.

I am traditionally a left leaning individual, full disclosure, but the last decade, 2 at a push, schools have been pretty much forced to adopt new teaching styles that benefit girls.

There is a great deal of focus on how to get young women in to core sciences, technology and mathematics, to the point where only females get encouraged in the classroom and also pushed towards extracurricular activities.

The teaching methods have shifted in some attempt to appease the far far left and the third wave feminist, to the point that the young, white, strait male in schools through the U.K. is the single demographic left unsupported, and the studies show that young, white males will have the hardest time getting gainful employment, getting a place in university, and in the core sciences many will be as a 2 to 1 disadvantage when applying for jobs, even when said demographic accounts for 50% + applications.

This, coupled with a very real problem that teachers, even some very good ones, realise that to continue even being able to operate as a teacher/school, students being taught to pass exams is more important than teaching students how and why to learn.

The only positive I can see from this is that students both male, female, from low income and high income families, who genuinely wish to work or study certain subjects, are often the only ones that do (outside of university), and it will be they who provide the greatest boon to whichever field they have interest in.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:40 AM
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a reply to: Freeborn

There may be correlation, I forget the study but there was some evidence that people who swear often are more emotionally intelligent and better at expressing thought, especially artistic. There was also a school of thought when i was younger that pupils who swore and were restless were bored (who knew) and needed more challenge/pushing to realise they could beat challenges.

I'd assume that this would also apply to English, and even to Maths, as expressing what the hell the numbers mean can sometimes be more taxing than learning formulae.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:47 AM
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a reply to: woodwardjnr

Let's be honest, a lot of young English teens can barely speak English properly, let alone write it down.

Standards are not what they once were, both in the home and in school.

Give it another 30 or 40 years and the youth will stick to grunting and snarling to communicate.



posted on Jan, 29 2016 @ 06:52 AM
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a reply to: Punisher75

I'm not above doing it too when I'm texting or on here. To be honest if people heard the way I am at home or how I chat with my friends they would probably assume I'm an illiterate chav. Fortunately, in the workplace I can fake it enough to get by.



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